The David Sarnoff Library
Home The Library Online Site Map Site Map Site Map Site Map aboutus.htm    

Diary Entries

Part One:
December 1934 - March 1935

(p. 106)

12/17/34 - I had a discussion with Mr. Ritter this afternoon concerning the 1935 budget for our section. It appeared that he approved the major items which I had included in this budget. At this time I told Mr. Ritter that I really agreed with Mr. [Terence] Shrader that the Development Section requires better facilities for their work. I told him I felt that this would be an assistance to us in transferring our research work into the development field. At the present time we are forced to carry the work on much further than we like because the Development Section is unable to carry on the early stages of development due to their lack of facilities.

12/17/34 - I had a talk this morning with Mr. Nelson concerning one of his ideas on an iconoscope, or rather an improved form of iconoscope. This device is very similar to one of mine which I devised in November.

12/18/34 - I showed Mr. McClair and Harry Thompson my results obtained on the multiplier tube. I also described the results to Mr. Ritter over the phone. Mr. Ritter made a suggestion for a multiplier tube on the high-frequency principle in which the alternating voltages could be supplied to the grid rather than between the two plates. I reported to Dr. Shackelford and to Mr. Dreyer that the Frantz high-speed electron device was interesting and likely to work but that it would be a job of a month or three months to try it out properly and since it is not directly in the field of the [RCA] Radiotron Company, I do not consider it desirable to make these tests. If Mr. Frantz will sell the device for a nominal sum, or is willing to make the test for himself we might be interested in it further. I discussed with Mr. Shrader the desirability of his section having a machine shop similar to ours and other facilities. I showed him our shop in much detail and discussed with him the cost of the apparatus. I showed him some of the work which had been done and told him the time that had been required to do this work. When I had finished the test of the multiplier tube further today, I discovered that it had an air leak. I expect to make up another tube similar to this.

12/18/34 - I discussed yesterday with Mr. Ritter our need for an exhaust man when the new exhaust equipment is completed. He asked me to see Mr. King concerning a man.  He thought it likely that one of the men there would be suitable for the work.

1/9/35 - I discussed the ultra-short-wave field with Commander Sordina of the Marelli Company of Italy at considerable length. Messrs. Ritter, Johnson, Kilgore, [Leon] Nergaard, and Salzberg took part in the discussion also. We demonstrated to Commander Sordina the transmitting and receiving equipment using the small tubes made by Mr. Rose, and the magnetron set-up of Mr. Kilgore's. I attempted to give him a survey of the best methods of transmitting and receiving at wavelengths between 50 cm and 1 meter.

1/17/35 - I discussed a gas-tube patent application with Zalesak for about forty-five minutes.

Donald Gates visited me and spent about an hour telling me of his progress with his technical studies.

(p. 107) 1/17/35 - Yesterday I spent about an hour and a half to two hours with Mr. Dreyer and Mr. Ritter discussing the principles of operation of the Frantz high-speed electron device.

1/28/35 - Major [Edwin A.] Armstrong called me today, January 28th, to inquire concerning [F. B.] Llewellyn's paper presented at the A.I.E.E. meeting in New York on Thursday. He was interested in finding out whether or not there was any indication that the Bell Laboratories realize the reduction in noise-to-signal ratio which may be obtained through the use of wide-band frequency modulation. In the course of the conversation he informed me that the small acorn pentodes afford approximately a six to one reduction in noise-to-signal ratio as compared with the ZM-502 tubes when used in his wide-band circuit to Camden at seven meters. He has invited me to listen in on this some time in the near future. I informed Mr. Ritter and Mr. Salzberg of this report of improvement using the small tubes.

2/1/35 - Yesterday I attended a meeting of the Phototube Subcommittee of the I.R.E. Electronics Committee, at which were Dr. [Harold] Ulrey of the Westinghouse Company, Mr. Wilson of the Bell Telephone Company, and Dr. Kievet of the Hygrade Sylvania Company. After the meeting I had a private discussion with Dr. Ulrey concerning Dr. Kozanowski. He spoke very highly of him, and said that a decision would be reached probably next Tuesday, and that he would let me know what the decision was.

I discussed with Mr. [John C.] Warner today Mr. Zalesak’s request for original copies of all correspondence in the Heany case for Mr. [Otto] Schairer.

2/4/35 - A conference concerning electron multipliers was held in my office today between Messrs. Smith and Shore of the RCA Patent Department, and Dr. Miller and Mr. H. C. Thompson, and myself of our laboratory. After some preliminary discussion at which the essential differences between the static and dynamic types of multipliers were brought out, and the mode of operation of the [Philo] Farnsworth multiplier outlined, when used as an amplifier and as an oscillator, it developed that Messrs. Smith and Shore were interested in the prior art concerning the Farnsworth dynamic multiplier. Dr. Miller produced a number of references to Barkhausen oscillators which it was his impression were similar in principle to the Farnsworth multiplier.  I expressed it as my opinion that the multiplier was essentially different from any Barkhausen oscillator, and that no device which did not serve as a multiplier, and did not operate with secondary emission and with changing potentials, could be considered an anticipation of the Farnsworth high-frequency-type multiplier. This appeared to be the consensus of the gathering at the end of our discussion, and it was felt that no adequate prior art had been discovered. I suggested that, perhaps, some of the published work of Professor E[rnest]. O. Lawrence of the University of California describing his high-frequency-type ion accelerator might disclose something in connection with the high-frequency multiplier. I stated to Messrs. Smith and Shore that we were more interested in the high-frequency-type device as an oscillator than as an amplifier, because the static-type multiplier seems better than the high-frequency type, but that the high-frequency type gives promise of being a high-efficiency short-wave oscillator. Dr. Miller mentioned Klemperert’s device using grids to key the electron emission of thermionic cathodes intended to operate in a similar manner to the Farnsworth high-frequency oscillator.

(p. 108) 2/8/35 - Yesterday Mr. H. O. Peterson of RCA Communications visited our laboratory, and spent several hours with me discussing short-wave problems and looking over our work.

Last night I attended the meeting of the Philadelphia Section of the I.R.E. at Philadelphia, at which Mr. Farnsworth gave his paper on electron multiplier tubes. After the meeting I talked with Mr. Diehl of RCA Victor who told me of some of the new measurement equipment Victor is developing. Diehl said that they would be glad to have an opportunity to consider manufacture of any special equipment which we need for measurement purposes in our laboratory.

Today I spent about an hour and a half with Professor Schroeter and Dr. Urtel of the Telefunken Laboratories discussing short-wave problems and other vacuum-tube matters.

2/13/35 - I talked to H. W. Lord, of the General Electric Company, today about the possibility of obtaining from them a thyratron spot welder. He thought they would be able to supply a unit capable of doing anything we require; including tubes, control panel, and welding transformer for about $350.00. This would operate on 440-volt and would have a maximum load of about 14,000 amperes. We would need to supply the 220-440-volt transformer, the welding head, and a potentiometer control. Lord expected to have the estimate sent to me next week. He estimated about four weeks for delivery.

It has developed that the thyratron unit that we had ordered through Sidney, of the Equipment Development Section, is not what we wanted. I expect to cancel this order.

I received a telephone call from Dr. F. B. Llewellyn of the Bell Telephone Laboratories, concerning the measurements on input loading. He states that Chaffee has now found that the input resistance varies as the square of the frequency under normal amplifier tube conditions, and that the measurements showing a linear variation were made near cut-off. It thus appears that there is no longer any difference in view-point between us and the Bell Laboratories. It was quite clear from Llewellyn's statement that he had thought that the linear variation with frequency was correct before his discussion with us.

Llewellyn wanted to know if we had sent in our paper to the I.R.E., and said that if we had Chaffee would prepare his material as a discussion of our paper. I suggested that we would like to make reference in our paper to the latest results to prevent any possibility of a continuation of the apparent disagreement between the Bell Laboratories and our group. I suggested that we would like to show them our paper when we have it prepared, and come to an agreement with them as to how we will make reference to their work. Llewellyn discussed the matter with Chaffee and then informed me that he thought that would be entirely satisfactory. He will call me when Chaffee’s work is ready for publication, or if ours is ready first we will get in touch with them.

2/21/35 - On Tuesday a meeting of the workers in the television projection field was held in my office from 10:30 until 12:00. On Wednesday I attended from 10:00 until 12:00 a meeting of the television group, including representatives from Camden. This morning a meeting of the Power Tube Development Section and our Short-Wave Group was held in my office from 10:00 until 12:00. This afternoon a party from Brooklyn Polytechnic Institute headed by Professor Weber visited our laboratory.

(p. 109)

<< Prev

 Home |  Back to Top
This website is supported by Sarnoff Corporation RCA and New Jersey Historical Commission  
©2001-2007 David Sarnoff Collection. All rights reserved.